Oliver, British Columbia

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Oliver
Town
Town of Oliver[1]
Townflower2.jpg
Motto: "Borne of the Waters, Blest by the Sun"
Oliver is located in British Columbia
Oliver
Oliver
Location of Oliver in British Columbia
Coordinates: 49°10′58″N 119°33′5″W / 49.18278°N 119.55139°W / 49.18278; -119.55139
Country  Canada
Province  British Columbia
Region South Okanagan
Regional district Okanagan-Similkameen
Village Incorporated 1945
Village Founded 1918
Town Incorporated 1990
Government
 • Governing body Band Council, Town Council, RDOS Board
 • Chief/Mayor/Director C. Louie, R. Hovanes, A.Patton
Area
 • Town 4.88 km2 (1.88 sq mi)
Elevation 310 m (1,020 ft)
Population (2011)[2][3]
 • Town 4,824
 • Density 990/km2 (2,600/sq mi)
 • Urban 5,175
Time zone PST (UTC-8)
Postal code V0H 1T0
Area code(s) (250)
Highways Highway 97
Website http://www.oliver.ca/

Oliver is a town at the south end of the Okanagan Valley in the Southern Interior of British Columbia, Canada, with a population of over 4,000 people. It is located between Osoyoos and Okanagan Falls, and is labeled as the Wine Capital of Canada by Tourism British Columbia.[4]

The community of Oliver is made up of land governed by three different bodies: the Town of Oliver, the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen and the Osoyoos Indian Band.

Local industries include grape and fruit production, agri-tourism, wine production, ranching, golfing & recreation, retail & service trades. Some of the largest employers include Osoyoos Indian Band, School District #53, Interior Health and Okanagan Tree Fruit Cooperative.

Origin of Name[edit]

Named after John Oliver (1856–1927), Premier of British Columbia. 'Honest John' and his government brought irrigation water and settlement lots to the area with the South Okanagan Lands Project.

Early history[edit]

The First Nations of the South Okanagan settled near the river, creeks and valley lakes. The first encroachment from the outside world came circa 1811, when fur traders came to the area with the establishment of Fort Okanagan (now in the US) and first penetrated the area for trade.

In the 1880s, free gold-bearing quartz was found at Camp McKinney (east of Oliver) becoming a busy gold mine, attracting miners, con men, and outlaws. Fairview (just west of and above Oliver) miners found gold and fueled the growth of a boomtown but it lasted just a few years and no remnants of the town survive today, other than a heritage marker.

  • Established in 1918 Oliver was a settlement for unemployed veterans of the First World War, a gravity-fed canal was constructed to provide irrigation to the semi-arid area.
  • On January 30, 1919, the SOLP (South Okanagan Lands Project) began work on the Intake Dam at the base of McIntyre Bluff. Over the next eight years the 23 concrete lined miles of the Main Canal was dug southward to the Boundary. Eighteen and a half feet across the top, five feet deep and delivering 230 cubic feet per second, SOLP designed it to enable farmers to put nearly a foot of water per month on every acre of bottom land in the southern Valley. To get the Canal from the east side of the Valley to the benches on the west, the “big siphon”—now concrete, but originally a 1,940-foot (590 m)-long wood-stave pipe of six and a half-foot-diameter—was constructed. It runs directly beneath the centre of Oliver. The offices of the land project and the building that housed the BC Police built circa 1924 stand today in Oliver as preserved heritage sites.
  • A post office was established in 1921 and the BC government administered the area until 1945 when a village was incorporated and a council elected. In 1991, the community's municipal incorporation was upgraded to Town, its current status.[5]
  • In 1922 electrical power was brought to Oliver by the West Kootenay Power and Light Co.
  • In 1923 the Kettle Valley Railway (CPR) constructed Oliver station and rails to transport fruit north to Penticton.

Administration of Water[edit]

  • SOLP (1919–1964) South Okanagan Lands Project - established by the Province of BC 1921 and run by provincial government employees for over forty years. In the spring of 1964 the Oliver/Osoyoos Fruit Growers’ Association was informed that the province was getting out of the irrigation business.
  • SOLID (1964–1989) South Okanagan Lands and Irrigation District - On June 25, 1964 the Fruit Growers' Association volunteered itself to be the cornerstone of the locally constituted South Okanagan Lands Irrigation District which operated the system until 1989.
  • Oliver Water (1989 to present) Town of Oliver - The water district was divided into two parts to be run by municipal governments. The Towns of Oliver and Osoyoos now deliver nineteen billion imperial gallons—nearly one hundred billion litres—to the Valley’s parched soils annually. 1990 saw the election of Water Councillors in both communities - a first in BC

Airport[edit]

A helicopter lands at Transwest
  • CAU3 Paved Hard Surface 3200 ft by 50 ft
  • Elevation: 1015 ft
  • VFR - Lighted strip
  • Owned by Town of Oliver

Coordinates:

  • Lat 49-10.24 N
  • Lon 119-33.04 W
  • Home to Oliver Flying Club ( Terminal and Hangars ), Okanagan Kootenay Aircadet Gliding Program, VMR Aviation, Transwest Helicopters along with Oliver Fire Department, Oliver-Osoyoos Search and Rescue and Big Horn Squadron Royal Canadian Air Cadets

Population[edit]

Historical population
Year Pop. ±%
1951 1,000 —    
1956 1,147 +14.7%
1961 1,774 +54.7%
1966 1,563 −11.9%
1971 1,615 +3.3%
1976 1,641 +1.6%
1981 1,893 +15.4%
1986 1,963 +3.7%
1991 3,743 +90.7%
1996 4,285 +14.5%
2001 4,224 −1.4%
2006 4,370 +3.5%
2011 4,824 +10.4%
[6]
OIB iconic sign at Senkulmen
  • Town of Oliver: 4824
  • Regional District Area 'C': 3473
  • Osoyoos Indian Band: 900

Notable people from Oliver[edit]

Climate[edit]

Oliver has a semi-arid climate (BSk) with hot, dry summers and cool winters.


Climate data for Oliver
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 16.0
(60.8)
17.8
(64)
23.0
(73.4)
32.2
(90)
37.8
(100)
40.0
(104)
43.9
(111)
40.0
(104)
38.3
(100.9)
29.0
(84.2)
20.0
(68)
16.1
(61)
43.9
(111)
Average high °C (°F) 1.9
(35.4)
5.5
(41.9)
12.0
(53.6)
17.4
(63.3)
22.0
(71.6)
25.8
(78.4)
29.8
(85.6)
29.6
(85.3)
23.9
(75)
15.6
(60.1)
6.8
(44.2)
1.5
(34.7)
16.0
(60.8)
Daily mean °C (°F) −0.8
(30.6)
1.4
(34.5)
6.2
(43.2)
10.7
(51.3)
15.1
(59.2)
18.9
(66)
22.2
(72)
21.8
(71.2)
16.4
(61.5)
9.7
(49.5)
3.3
(37.9)
−1.1
(30)
10.3
(50.5)
Average low °C (°F) −3.4
(25.9)
−2.7
(27.1)
0.4
(32.7)
3.9
(39)
8.1
(46.6)
11.9
(53.4)
14.6
(58.3)
13.8
(56.8)
8.9
(48)
3.7
(38.7)
−0.2
(31.6)
−3.8
(25.2)
4.6
(40.3)
Record low °C (°F) −26.7
(−16.1)
−28.9
(−20)
−17.8
(0)
−9.4
(15.1)
−2.2
(28)
0.6
(33.1)
3.9
(39)
3.3
(37.9)
−5.6
(21.9)
−12.0
(10.4)
−21.0
(−5.8)
−26.1
(−15)
−28.9
(−20)
Precipitation mm (inches) 28.7
(1.13)
21.4
(0.843)
24.9
(0.98)
26.5
(1.043)
34.7
(1.366)
41.5
(1.634)
25.5
(1.004)
20.7
(0.815)
18.7
(0.736)
21.6
(0.85)
31.2
(1.228)
34.2
(1.346)
329.7
(12.98)
Rainfall mm (inches) 13.7
(0.539)
16.3
(0.642)
23.2
(0.913)
26.5
(1.043)
34.7
(1.366)
41.5
(1.634)
25.5
(1.004)
20.7
(0.815)
18.7
(0.736)
21.5
(0.846)
25.9
(1.02)
16.2
(0.638)
284.5
(11.201)
Snowfall cm (inches) 15.0
(5.91)
5.1
(2.01)
1.7
(0.67)
0.0
(0)
0.0
(0)
0.0
(0)
0.0
(0)
0.0
(0)
0.0
(0)
0.1
(0.04)
5.3
(2.09)
18.0
(7.09)
45.2
(17.8)
Avg. precipitation days (≥ 0.2 mm) 9.9 8.0 9.0 9.0 9.9 9.9 6.2 5.7 6.2 7.9 11.9 11.7 105.1
Avg. rainy days (≥ 0.2 mm) 5.5 6.6 8.5 9.0 9.9 9.9 6.2 5.7 6.2 7.8 10.4 5.3 90.9
Avg. snowy days (≥ 0.2 cm) 4.9 1.5 0.7 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 1.9 6.9 15.9
Mean monthly sunshine hours 42.7 83.4 141.3 191.6 239.7 238.6 282.7 274.5 211.9 147.5 64.4 41.4 1,959.6
Percent possible sunshine 15.8 29.2 38.4 46.6 50.6 49.2 57.8 61.5 55.9 44.0 23.3 16.1 40.7
Source: [7]

References[edit]

External links[edit]